As the temperatures move up and down daily around the freezing mark, your house’s exterior takes a real beating, especially the roof. Snow that melts off the warmer parts runs down to the colder parts near the edges and freezes, causing a little ‘dam’ to build up, stopping more meltwater from draining.
Meltwater can back up behind this dam for 5 or 10 feet, getting under the shingles. Eventually, it can drip through the roof into the soffits (the exterior overhangs), walls or, worst of all, into your home. And that leads inevitably tounderlying structural issues that most roofers just like to cover up, that will cost much more to fix in the end. You do not want that.
This is particularly true if you have a dark roof where it gets full sun during the day, ensuring a melt of whatever snow may have fallen previously. There are a couple of ways to do this:
- Make sure that your downspouts are clear and free to drain from leaves, debris or snow buildup. This will prevent backup and freezing up top.
- Physically clearing the snow from the edges of your roof to prevent dam formation. This is tougher if it’s a long way up. Always be safe!
- Have de-icing cables installed. These are cables that plug in to an exterior GFI outlet, run up the downspout and sit on the lower couple of feet of your roof. They keep the temperature up high enough that ice cannot form and water can drain properly.
The way to prevent this is make sure that
your roof is draining properly of melting snow
At Walker, we can install for you either more expensive auto-timed systems, or more cost-effective manual systems that you run for a bit after every snowfall. Either way, they’re a sensible and low-cost way to prevent major roof and structural harm to your home.